BOYS CROSS COUNTRY FINALS: Grand Blanc's Fisher wins second individual state title; Rockford wins D-1 Team TitleTrack and Field  |
BROOKLYN, Mich. — Grant Fisher added another chapter to his stellar career as a prep distance runner Saturday, even though he felt like there was another opponent out there besides the deep field of talented runners at the Lower Peninsula Division 1 state championships.
“The wind was terrible. It was something else to worry about,” said Fisher, a Grand Blanc senior who is now a two-time state champion.
The wind chill was in the 20s and temps in the low 40s thanks to a brutal, ice cold wind.
“I just pushed through it the best I could,“ added Fisher.
Not only did he win by some 27 seconds, he became just the fifth runner in state history to break the 15-minute barrier at the state finals. He now has the third-fastest state finals time at Michigan Speedway thanks to his 14:52.5 clocking, forever cementing his name amongst the state’s all-time elite.
Former Olympian Dathan Ritzenheim of Rockford ran 14:10.4 in 2000 in D-1, while Jason Hartman, also of Rockford, clocked 14:51.0 in 1998 at the Class A meet. Maverick Darling of Ovid-Elsie ran 14:52.8 in winning the 2007 D-3 crown, while Dustin Voss of Saline posted a 14:54.4 time in winning the D-1 crown in 2003.
“Dathan was in a class of his own. He’s an Olympian and you look at his professional career and he’s the best ever in Michigan,” Fisher pointed out. “I was just trying to win and help my team do as best as it could today. I’m sure my time wasn’t as fast as it would have been on a nice day, but breaking 15 minutes here, a place where there has been so many great runners over the years, is still a great accomplishment. I only broke 15 minutes twice this year.”
Rockford entered the meet ranked third, but had its runner had its collective unit brave the severe, blustery winds to score 140 points and win its first title since 2002 and third overall. Isaac Harding (fourth), freshman Cole Johnson (16th), Paul Burke (57th) and Grayson Harding (58th) paced Rockford.
Ever-improving White Lake Lakeland snuck into the runner-up spot with 146 points, ahead of top-ranked and league rival Waterford Mott (148). Northville (165) and Saline (203) rounded out the top five.&